The Lake County Board of County Commissioners met in special session on Tuesday, January 8, 1991, at 6:00 p.m., in the Board of County Commissioner's Meeting Room, Lake County Courthouse, Tavares, Florida. Commissioners present at the meeting were: Donald B. Bailey, Chairman; C. W. "Chick" Gregg; Michael J. Bakich; Richard Swartz; and Catherine Hanson. Others present were: Annette Star Lustgarten, County Attorney; Alan A. Thelen, County Manager; and Toni M. Austin, Deputy Clerk.
PLANNING & DEVELOPMENT
FUTURE LAND USE ELEMENT
Mr. John Swanson, Director of Planning and Development, appeared before the Board and presented an explanation of the Land Use Map, which was the last element prepared. Mr. Swanson discussed the relation between the Comprehensive Plan and the Land Use Map. At this time, Mr. Swanson presented a summary of the designated land areas, in relation to units per acre for the urban area, the urban expansion area, and the suburban area.
At this time, the Chairman, Commr. Bailey, requested public comments.
Mr. Hal Turville, President of the Lake County Conservation Council, appeared before the Board and discussed the idea of three units per acre; lowering the service on the present roads; and the decrease in available water. He stated that, by the Board approving the Comprehensive Plan as proposed today, the people will not be better served by urban sprawl, the environment will not be better served, and the quality of life, in the existing community within the County, will not better served. He further stated that the approval of this plan will not be cost efficient for development in the County.
Mr. Wayne Scott, representing the rural area, appeared before the Board to discuss taxes, the advertisement of the public
hearings for the Comprehensive Plan, and asked questions regarding the County being mandated by the State to develop certain criteria when creating a Land Use Plan.
Ms. Phyllis Hayes appeared before the Board and stated that she had written the Board a letter, at which time, she presented a summary. Ms. Hayes discussed her property that is on the real estate market, and is zoned rural. She further discussed property taxes, and the idea of letting people do what they want with their own property. Ms. Hayes discussed the dictation of criteria for a Comprehensive Plan from the State, and what will be developed in the frozen out citrus groves.
Mr. Ed Borey, architect, appeared before the Board and stated that he is one of the owners of a 260 acre parcel of land on Highway 452. He stated that the property is presently rural. Mr. Borey stated that he is in opposition to placing one house per five acres.
Mr. Keith Ray, Weatherly Investments, appeared before the Board and stated that he owns approximately 434 acres in South Lake County on US Highway 27. Mr. Ray stated that he supports the proposed Land Use Map, in relation to South Lake County, and his investment in this area. Mr. Ray stated that he feels the map is appropriate for the land uses in South Lake County, because of its location to Disney World, and that it does protect property rights. At this time, Mr. Ray encouraged the Board to adopt the proposed map.
Mr. Leo Steinmetz, Steinmetz Construction & Development, appeared before the Board and discussed the Cardinal Village development and questioned the vesting of the plat. Mr. Steinmetz stated that the subdivision is currently platted for five (5) lots per acre.
Ms. Annette Star Lustgarten, County Attorney, discussed the vesting of plats before 1976, and stated that language will be developed and inserted into the Plan to address this issue. She stated that the language will be submitted to the Board on Monday
night for review. She further stated that, effectively, the Board is saying that Mr. Steinmetz would be vested, presuming that the language is changed, and the Commission approves the amendment.
Commr. Bailey stated that it is the consensus of the Board that the vesting rights of Mr. Steinmetz will be approved, according to the language to be developed, and Board approval.
Mr. Egor Emery appeared before the Board and stated that the County is under water restrictions from the St. Johns River Water Management District, and that more people are moving into Florida. Mr. Emery stated that the County cannot be developed at the rate that is being projected, based on the present water resources. He stated that he would like to see the rural roads maintained at their present level of service; and to see greater protection for areas that are designated as aquifer recharge. He further stated that he would like to see more attention paid to recreational areas, in some other form than golf courses.
Mr. Howard Barry appeared before the Board and stated that the result of the excessive population density in all zoning areas, sprawl traffic congestion, school overcrowding, air pollution, water depletion, energy waste, excessive garbage and ever increasing taxes will be at the expense and inconvenience of comfort of the existing residents of Lake County. Mr. Berry also stated that he, along with the residents of South Lake County, object to the arbitrary increase in road standard classifications that will permit increased traffic and usages, especially in protected areas.
Mr. Carl Linstrand appeared before the Board and stated that he could not understand Lake County developing a growth plan, if the County did not have a growth objective. Mr. Linstrand stated that the map is a blueprint, which looks like a "World City" is being developed. He further stated that the County should develop on its own, and that he would like to see an objective established using the map as a guide. Mr. Linstrand stated that the Board should make independent rulings on the requests made by its
Mr. Mark Edwards appeared before the Board and read a letter from Mr. James Edwards, which indicated that taxes should not be considered as costs, but as a form of investment required to encourage and support accelerated growth.
Mr. John Weatherford appeared before the Board and stated that he feels the proposed map places a strong emphasis on land development regulations to control growth. Mr. Weatherford stated he learned from the Executive Committee that, if there are large expanses of development, education becomes very costly, because of bussing and transporting of children to and from school, and because of the cost involved to build new schools. He stated that Map #4 was the one proposed by the Executive Committee.
Mr. Dale Ladd appeared before the Board and stated that the audience should not be concerned with the areas indicated on the map, in relation to density and development, and should be considering all of the elements of the Comprehensive Plan.
Mr. Bill Ray appeared before the Board and stated that he sits on numerous committees in Lake County, and that the sole purpose of government is to protect individuals' rights. Mr. Ray discussed the vague term "urban sprawl" and stated that, in another area "urban sprawl" is sound economic growth, and a distinction needed to be made. Mr. Ray stated that the base map, the Land Use Map, is not the map being shown today, but it is the unwritten map contained within the Conservation Element. Mr. Ray further stated that this element will protect the natural resources of Lake County. He stated that a problem will exist, if the County estimates the population to low. He discussed protecting the farmer by increasing his value of land, the issue of a "holding zone", and the water resources in Lake County. Mr. Ray recommended that the property boundaries be contiguous to the date of adoption, and that the landowner have the ability to decide which density he can obtain. He further recommended that the Board strongly review and approve the map presented to them, with any alterations that
are made, with the sites being specific in nature and not philosophical in general.
Ms. Paulette Alexander appeared before the Board and stated that she served on the Executive Committee, which assisted in the development of the Comprehensive Plan. She discussed the observations she made while serving on that Committee, in relation to the uniqueness of Lake county, as follows: (1) the environment; (2) Lake County suffering tremendous economic devastation by the loss of citrus; and (3) the fast growth that Lake County is facing.
Ms. Alexander discussed the public hearing phase, and the position people took when appearing before the Committee. She recommended that the County only designate the urban and urban expansion areas on the map, the urban nodes, the areas that are currently under protection, or special criteria, and color the rest of the map one color. Then let the land development be driven by performance criteria and the market. Ms. Alexander stated that she disagrees with placing certain densities on the map, and that all of the maps, that have been prepared, have been a disservice to all involved.
Mr. Don Yung appeared before the Board and stated that he is concerned with the property on Highway 44, which he had rezoned from agricultural to AR, even though he requested RR. He discussed the rural designation on the map, and the growth in the Deland area, and requested that the Board reserve the land rights that have already been granted to individuals.
Mr. Buddy Graham appeared before the Board and stated that he has a 170 acre parcel of property on Lake Yale and Highway 452, which the Board rezoned six months ago to RR and ER. He stated that, according to the proposed map, the zoning will be taken away, and will change it back to one site per five acres, which is unfair.
Mr. Murphy Cameron appeared before the Board and discussed the rainfall and drought in the State of Florida. Mr. Cameron stated that one day some of the roads will be under water, and questioned
how the County planned on handling emergency situations. He further stated that the big developments can buy the performance standards, and asked for a responsible government.
Mr. T. J. Townsend appeared before the Board and discussed County Road 48, where there was a lot of citrus land. Mr. Townsend stated that he has followed through the six drafts of the elements, but stated that, in draft seven, the area where he lives, which was semi-rural (one dwelling unit per two acres), has now been changed to urban expansion (six dwelling units per acre). Mr. Townsend stated that he is concerned about the traffic hazards on CR 48, because of the sand mines and the incinerator. He stated that there are three subdivisions, with approximately 400 homes, and expressed concerns about the traffic hazards and the non-existence of turning lanes from these subdivisions. He requested that the Board recognize that the proposed map does not cause things to happen in Lake County.
Ms. Marty Scott appeared before the Board and discussed concerns involving the water level and future water contamination, and the position of the grove owners.
Ms. Ruth Yancy Ray, cattle rancher in South Lake County, appeared before the Board and stated that the proposed map is taking away the rural area, and this would cause property owners to have to sell larger pieces of land, in order to survive. Ms. Ray stated that she did not feel that anyone has the right to tell anyone how to use his property. She feels that, if the people can get over the fear of the proposed map, the other elements of the plan are so extensive, and that they will protect the people. Ms. Ray expressed her appreciation to the Board, and to those who have participated in the development of the elements, and for the public advertisements.
Mr. Beryle Stokes, Jr. appeared before the Board and stated that he can support the proposed map being shown, and encouraged the Board to support the map, which will be fair to the landowners.
Mr. Greg Beliveau, Land Planning Group, appeared before the
Board to discuss the point systems, and the rural village concept. Mr. Beliveau stated that he has reviewed these issues and sent the staff recommendations. He discussed the river basin, and submitted a map to the staff, and stated that, eventually, there should be consideration to adopt two rural villages within the basin, to allow those areas, if they meet the criteria, to be developed or expanded.
Mr. Frank Gaylord appeared before the Board to discuss the inconsistency in the intergovernmental relationship provision. Mr. Gaylord stated that, as a general rule, property owners enter into agreements for annexation, for the purpose of acquiring services from that particular municipality. He suggested that, if the County does not put it into the Land Use Plan, then the County should allow the property owner to transfer his or her property rights, for annexation, over to the municipality, to be treated as a municipality, for the purpose of those joint planning areas. He stated that this would assist the County in being consistent.
Ms. Cecelia Bonifay, Attorney representing several property owners in Lake County, appeared before the Board and stated that she feels that her particular clients are in support of the latest map. Ms. Bonifay discussed her perception of the map, and stated that no one person will develop without meeting all of the requirements. She discussed the proposed MSTU's, and stated that the map is to provide guidance and direction, in order to give each individual a range of opportunities that are going to exist, and to be applied to all of the other required elements.
Ms. Kathleen Traywick, Altoona, Lake Doerr, appeared before the Board and stated that there is a land market on Lake Doerr.
Mr. Randall Jones, Chief Financial Officer of G & S Packing, appeared before the Board and stated that he lost millions of dollars in terms of frozen citrus, and that there should be enough flexibility from the proposed elements for the next generation of ownership, in terms of reasonable development of land in the future. Mr. Jones stated that he supports the urban village
Ms. Fay Buchanan, Eustis, appeared before the Board and discussed the Ocala National Forest, and the Wekiva and the Green Swamp areas, that will be added to the urban area, and questioned why the area between Astatula and Lake Apopka is not open for development, with Commr. Gregg answering her questions.
Ms. Buchanan stated that she supports the rural village concept, and that the County still needs some sort of public transportation to tie in with the other mass transit systems. She stated that she opposes too much development, and is glad that the State has designated the Wekiva and Green Swamp areas.
Ms. Susan Bergman, President of the Leesburg Board of Realtors, appeared before the Board and stated that she appreciates the direction that the County has taken for growth, and approves of the map. Ms. Bergman stated that she feels that the Board is definitely taking a healthy stance for economic stability for Lake County.
Commr. Bailey called for further public input on the issue being considered tonight. There being no further comments, Commr. Bailey closed the public hearing portion of the Land Use Map.
Commr. Gregg clarified the note at the top of each map that has been presented, which indicates that the map cannot be correctly interpreted independent of the Lake County Comprehensive Plan, as adopted by Lake County Ordinance, etc. Commr. Gregg stated that the map is an overlay, with underlying zoning that will be adjusted. He stated that the area of Yalaha, and Sunnyside, are shown as urban expansion, but the recently approved zoning in these areas is not experiencing urban expansion densities at this time. Commr. Gregg discussed Page 1-46, b. Vehicular Access to an Arterial, regarding the point system, and stated that the idea behind this plan is to allow flexibility. He stated that the plan is favorable to private property rights, and he will continue to stand behind the free enterprise system. He further stated that he has a problem with the map being proposed today, and that he is
concerned for the small land owners.
Commr. Bakich discussed Map #6, and stated that he has problems with bringing in to much subjectiveness, instead of objectiveness, and will have difficulty accepting what has been offered in the concept being presented. He stated that, no matter what map is approved, there needs to be strong land development regulations.
Commr. Bailey stated that he is supporting the map being presented at this time, and feels that the map is flexible with the existing zoning.
Commr. Hanson stated that it is unfortunate that the County does not have the performance standards to go along with the map. She stated that she agrees with Commr. Bakich, that there should be no lines, but strictly performance standards, but that this cannot be done because of the time constraints involved. Commr. Hanson stated that she would prefer to have the flexibility, and have the urban area, the semi-urban area, and everything rural, and then have the ability to require certain performance criteria from the different developers.
Discussion occurred regarding the map before the Board tonight, in relation to population. Mr. John Swanson, Director of Planning and Development, stated that this is also a market driven map, with an infrastructure driven plan, which are two items that the Department of Community Affairs (DCA) has insisted upon.
Commr. Swartz discussed the population average being used within the different areas designated on the map, and stated that there is no justification for the maps being brought before the Board. He discussed the problem that has evolved from devastating freezes, and the County not having a land use map. Commr. Swartz stated that he cannot support any map that has been presented to the Board, because you cannot send DCA a map when you know that someone is getting treated unfairly. He stated that the policy indicated that the County will have considered this issue by February, 1992.
At this time, it was the consensus of the Board not to vote on the map tonight.
Commr. Bakich addressed the issue of vesting, and stated that, if the Board was going to remain consistent, it might want to consider what was adopted in the Wekiva, in terms of vesting.
Commr. Swartz stated that the commercial and industrial should be vested the same way as residential, when it is properly zoned and has a site plan and/or approved plat; it should receive the vesting in the same way as residential; and should not be set aside as a special category. He stated that he would disagree with what was done in the Wekiva, and he does not support a vesting arrangement that says, property that is already vested has certain zoning, and is platted, and any application that is filed prior to the effective date, will receive protection under vesting. He stated that he could not support this.
Discussion occurred regarding the moratorium approved by the Board within the Wekiva area, and the 90 day period, with Commr. Gregg stating that there is a problem with people coming through for rezoning now, and obtaining a preliminary plat, and then losing the zoning before the adoption of the plan.
Commr. Swartz stated that there are three different vesting criteria, one each for residential, commercial and industrial, which he feels should be the same, and that he does not believe the Board should set a vesting date, in order that there be no misunderstanding.
Ms. Lustgarten stated that all of the existing industrial is now reflected on the Land Use Map, and there will be no industrial outside of what is reflected on the map.
Commr. Swartz stated that, if the industrial is reflected on the map, and there is an approvel site plan, then it will be compatible within the existing land use designation, and if it is not shown on the map, and there is no site plan, it will be incompatible.
At this time, it was the consensus of the Board to be in
agreement with the above comments made by Commr. Swartz regarding industrial.
Commr. Swartz discussed the issue of an individual having an approved site plan and/or preliminary plat, being vested, and the individual not being vested when he only has an application filed.
Discussion occurred regarding the issue of setting an application cutoff date, in order that a reasonable time is allowed for the applicant to obtain plat, or site plan, approval.
Ms. Bonifay stated, for the record, that this was to be a hearing on the Land Use Map and the Land Use Element. Ms. Bonifay stated that the majority of the people left after the discussion on the Land Use Map, because they thought the hearing was over, and the comments were to be reserved to the Board, and then discussion began concerning substances, policies of the Land Use Element, such as vesting, criteria, etc. She stated that a full hearing has never been conducted on the Land Use Element. She further stated that the next hearing is the final hearing, which is only a transmittal hearing.
Commr. Bailey called for public comment on the Land Use Element.
Ms. Cecelia Bonifay, Attorney representing a number of landowners in Lake County, appeared before the Board and stated that everyone needs to consider all of the elements, not just the proposed Land Use Map. Ms. Bonifay discussed vesting, and stated that the procedures used to differentiate commercial, industrial, and residential are similar to what was approved for the Wekiva area. She stated that certain nodes were designated, including urban and commercial, with no more residential being vested. She discussed the number of rezoning applications being made, and suggested that the Board proceed with the matter of vesting.
Mr. Bill Ray appeared before the Board and stated that he has a very difficult conflict with the intent of the notice, for the public to hear comment, and to give comment, on the Future Land Use Map. He stated that, after most of the public left, discussion
began in reference to the fundamentals of the Land Use Element, such as vesting, and therefore, does not meet the intent of the public notice classification.
Ms. Barbara Morris appeared before the Board and stated that she does not own any property outside of the Wekiva Protection area. Ms. Morris stated that the issue of vesting needs to be advertised, if this is the issue before the Board, because of the effect it will have on each individual.
Commr. Hanson stated that she agreed with Ms. Morris, and that, as things progressed in the Wekiva Basin Amendment, it was no where near what was ever advertised that was to be put into effect in the Wekiva Basin.
Mr. Dave Clapsaddle, Springstead Engineering, appeared before the Board and questioned procedures, in relation to vesting, at the time of preliminary plat approval, with Ms. Lustgarten stating that this would be at the time of Planning and Zoning approval.
Mr. Wayne Scott appeared before the Board and questioned his vested rights, and discussed the area at Highways 19/27 and the turnpike.
Ms. Ray appeared before the Board, once again, and stated that she felt the Board should have told the people tonight that there was going to be discussion on vesting.
Commr. Gregg stated that he is not in favor of changing the existing language regarding the residential vesting period, but that he does not have a problem with the two year period for commercial, if it is not in a compatible zoning. He stated that this meeting was advertised to cover the Land Use Element.
Commr. Swartz stated that, if there is a site plan in commercial zoning, it will be vested, as long as it is used within a two year period.
At this time, there was a consensus of the Board, in regards to the two year vesting period for commercial zoning, within a designated area, with approved site plans.
Ms. Lustgarten stated that language will be added to indicate
that plats, for which development permits, development orders, or building permits have not been approved and recorded prior to January, 1976, are not vested. If a development order, or building permit had been issued, and the plat was recorded prior to that date, it will be vested.
Ms. Lustgarten discussed the submission of the application for site plan, or preliminary plat, and the difficulty with not knowing what that final date of enactment will be. She stated that discussion has occurred regarding the adoption date being in July, with the Board having an option of setting a definite date.
Mr. Jim Bible, Greater Construction, appeared before the Board to discuss urban and urban expansion, and stated that the company has a number of projects that are PUD's, or that are straight zoning commercial, in the urban designation, or urban expansion designation, that will not be developed within the next two years.
Commr. Swartz stated that PUD's are referred to in another section of the Plan, and that, if it is commercial within the PUD, it has whatever vesting that the PUD allows. If the PUD is not developed within that period, the PUD and commercial zoning would be lost. Commr. Swartz further stated that, if it is not within an area that is designated on the map for commercial, and does not have an approved site plan, it would not be vested.
Mr. Ed Bergman appeared before the Board and stated that he cannot believe that the Commission will eliminate the values that have been invested in commercial property, with Commr. Bailey stating that it is the consensus of the Board not to make this change.
Mr. Ron Bischoff appeared before the Board and stated that the changed drafts of the proposed Land Use Plan need to be distributed to the community and everyone involved as soon as possible.
Ms. Susan Bergman appeared before the Board and questioned what will remain commercial.
Commr. Gregg stated that, if the property lies within the urban or urban expansion area, it will remain commercial, if it is
It was clarified that, if the person has commercial zoning, but is shown on the map to be in a rural area or semi-rural area, he would have to obtain an approved site plan to remain commercial for two years, and he would have to begin the development within the two year period.
Mr. Rodney Lyon appeared before the Board and stated that he owns a piece of property between Highway 27 and the Florida Turnpike, with his property being indicated on the new map as the suburban area. He stated that the property is zoned agricultural, and that the State Comprehensive Plan has placed it into the manufacturing node.
Mr. Larry Kirch directed the Board's attention to the table on Page 1-59, where the first seven zoning categories would be up to three units per acre, which would be compatible in suburban. (At this time, it was noted that he was referring to residential.) He stated that, in commercial, he recommended CP, PUD and RP zoning, because, for rural and semi-rural, it allows CP and PUD commercial, and urban expansion allows RP, and it would be up to the Board if any other commercial was to be allowed, and PFD's, and recommended following light manufacturing in the planned industrial, MP and LM areas.
Commr. Bailey presented the Clerk with written objections to be placed into the record, as follows:
Notice of Objections received from:
Roger W. Conner, Jr.
J. Frederick & Genevieve G. Kurras
Theodore C. Hayes
There being no further business to be brought to the attention of the Board, the meeting adjourned at 10:05 p.m.
DONALD B. BAILEY, CHAIRMAN
JAMES C. WATKINS, CLERK